860F.01/3–2945: Telegram

The Acting Secretary of State to the Ambassador in the Soviet Union ( Harriman )

784. Following is a summary of a telegram from the Embassy near the Czechoslovak Government in London (Zecho 30 March 28, 8 p.m.):

[Here follows a summary of telegram Zecho 30, March 28, 8 p.m. from the Chargé to the Czechoslovak Government in Exile, page 429.]

In as much as the Soviet Government has known of the plans of the Czechoslovak Government since February 9, the Department does not understand the sudden decision concerning the transfer of the Diplomatic Corps, particularly in view of the agreement on concerted action of the three powers contained in the Declaration on Liberated Europe signed at Yalta40 and the statements attributed to Molotov [Page 435] and Stalin in your 866 March 22, 9 p.m. and 933 [993] March 31, 5 p.m. This development cancels the Department’s instructions to ask for a blanket permit for the transit of the Mission through the Soviet military zone (our 719, March 27, 8 p.m. and 159 March 27, 8 p.m. to AmRep Bucharest).41 Instead, the Department instructs you to request visas for the Counselor of the Embassy Alfred W. Klieforth, First Secretary John Bruins, in addition to a code clerk and stenographer whose names will be supplied by London, in order to ascertain if the Soviet authorities are using the situation in Košice as a nominal excuse for their refusal to admit the representatives of friendly governments during the initial stages of political reconstruction or whether they wish to exclude all diplomatic representation during this period.

Can you inform us if the Soviet Ambassador Zorin (your 897 March 24, 7 p.m.42) plans to go to Košice or any other seat of the Czechoslovak Government prior to the arrival of other missions or other interim representation? Has the Soviet Government officially transferred the Košice district and adjoining areas to Czechoslovak civil authority under the Civil Affairs Agreement?

The Department appreciates the full reports you have sent on the Czechoslovak-Soviet negotiations in Moscow (your 866, March 22, 9 p.m.; 919, March 27, 1 p.m.;43 952, March 28, 10 p.m.44) and hopes you will supply any information or suggestions facilitating the early establishment of our representation to the Czechoslovak Government. We feel that this representation is highly desirable during the initial stages of reconstruction of the government and civil authority on Czechoslovak soil.

Repeated to Ankara as Department’s no. 388, and repeated to AmRep, Bucharest, as Department’s no. 170.

  1. Conferences at Yalta and Malta, p. 971.
  2. Neither printed; they stated that the American Mission to Czechoslovakia planned to leave London on or about March 29 with a Czechoslovak Government group and other diplomatic representatives and proceed to Constanza in Rumania and then overland to Košice or any other place where the Czechoslovak Government was established, and they suggested that Soviet and Rumanian authorities be approached with a view to expediting a blanket permit in order to avoid delay in processing individual transit permits (124.60F3/3–2745).
  3. Not printed; it reported that on March 22 the Moscow press announced the appointment of Valerian Alexandrovich Zorin as Soviet Ambassador to Czechoslovakia (701.6160F/3–2445).
  4. Telegram 919 not printed.
  5. Not printed; it reported on the negotiations which were taking place among various Czechoslovak groups regarding the formation of a new Czechoslovak Government (860F.01/3–2845). The results of these negotiations were described by the Ambassador in the Soviet Union in his telegram 993, March 31, 5 p.m., p. 430, detailing his talk with President Beneš.